Three great poets

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Paul Farley, Brian Johnstone, and JL Williams will be our trio of poets reading on Thursday 30th October at 7pm, at the CCA.

Paul Farley was born in Liverpool in 1965 and studied at the Chelsea School of Art. He has published four books with Picador: The Boy from the Chemist is Here to See You (which was awarded the Somerset Maugham Award and a Forward Prize in 1998); The Ice Age (winner of the 2002 Whitbread Poetry Prize, and a Poetry Book Society Choice); and Tramp in Flames, which was short-listed for the International Griffin Poetry Prize in 2007 and the T.S. Eliot Prize. In 2009 he received the E.M. Forster Award from the American Academy of Arts & Letters and a Travelling Scholarship from the Society of Authors. He has also written a book on Terence Davies’s Distant Voices, Still Lives (British Film Institute, 2006) and in 2007 edited a selection of John Clare for Faber’s Poet-to-Poet series. As a broadcaster he has written and presented many arts, feature and documentary programmes for BBC radio and television, including Radio 4’s The Echo Chamber, Sunday Features on Wilfred Owen and W.H. Auden, two Archive Hours on Philip Larkin, poetry features on John Clare, Frank O’Hara and Michael Drayton, and several original radio dramas and adaptations. His poems for radio are collected in Field Recordings: BBC Poems 1998-2008 (Donut Press, 2009) and a selected poems, The Atlantic Tunnel, was published in the US by Farrar, Straus & Giroux in 2010. He has also written more widely on the arts and literature for The Guardian, Art Review, Granta, Tate etc, the Independent, the Observer and Poetry Review; he is a frequent guest on programmes such as Saturday Review, The Culture Show, Front Row, Night Waves and The Verb. His book, Edgelands, a non-fiction journey into England’s overlooked wilderness (co-authored with Michael Symmons Roberts) was published by Jonathan Cape in 2011; it received the Royal Society of Literature’s Jerwood Award and was serialised as a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week. His most recent collection is The Dark Film, which was a Poetry Book Society Choice in 2012, and in 2013 he was awarded a Cholmondeley Prize. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and his Selected Poems appeard in 2014.

Brian Johnstone is a poet whose work has appeared throughout Scotland, in the UK, America and internationally. He has published six collections, most recently The Book of Belongings (2009) and Dry Stone Work (2014), both Arc Publications. His poems have been translated into over ten languages; in 2009 Terra Incognita, a chapbook in Italian translation, was published by L’Officina (Vicenza). In 2014 his work will appear on The Poetry Archive website. A founder and former Director of StAnza: Scotland’s International Poetry Festival, he has appeared at numerous international poetry festivals, from Macedonia to Nicaragua, and venues across the UK. http://brianjohnstonepoet.co.uk/

JL Williams was born in New Jersey and studied at Wellesley College and on the MLitt in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow. She moved to Edinburgh in 2001. She is particularly interested in translation and cross-form work and has collaborated with artists, musicians and filmmakers. She was awarded a grant from the Scottish Arts Council for a poetry collaboration entitled chiaroscuro pentimenti with composer Martin Parker and artist Anna Chapman, and the Edwin Morgan Travel Bursary from the Scottish Arts Trust. In September 2009 she journeyed to the Aeolian Isles to write a collection inspired by Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Condition of Fire (Shearsman Books, 2011). Her second collection, Locust and Marlin (Shearsman, 2014), explores the idea of home and where we come from. JL Williams performs in the band Opul and is Programme Manager at the Scottish Poetry Library.

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